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Equinor (NYSE: EQNR) on Wednesday joined the group of oil and gas majors reporting record profits for 2022 as its adjusted earnings after tax more than doubled on the back of high oil and gas prices.
The Norwegian energy major reported adjusted earnings after tax of $22.7 billion for 2022, more than double the $10 billion earnings booked in 2021.
Fourth-quarter adjusted earnings of $15.1 billion beat a company-provided poll of analysts who had expected $14.4 billion in earnings. Adjusted earnings after tax rose by 32% year on year to $5.8 billion for Q4.
Shares in Equinor jumped by more than 6% in pre-market trade in New York following the announcement of the results.
“In 2022, we responded to the energy crisis and contributed to energy security. With strong operational performance, we delivered record results and cash flow from operations,” Equinor’s president and CEO Anders Opedal said in a statement.
“On the back of strong earnings, outlook, and balance sheet, we step up capital distribution to expected 17 billion dollars in 2023.”
High gas prices and strong sales and trading results boosted Equinor’s earnings last year. On the back of record earnings and cash flows, the board of directors proposed a hike in the dividend for Q4 2022 to $0.30 per share, up from $0.20 per share for the third quarter of 2022.
“In addition, the board proposes an extraordinary cash dividend of USD 0.60 per share for the fourth quarter of 2022 based on strong earnings and the robust financial position,” the major said.
The board has also decided to increase the $1.2 billion share buyback program by up to $4.8 billion, resulting in a program of up to $6.0 billion in 2023.
Equinor joins all other major international oil and gas firms in reporting blockbuster profits for 2022. Chevron, Exxon, BP, and Shell have all reported record annual earnings for last year, prompting criticism from the White House, which slammed Exxon’s record earnings for 2022 as “outrageous,” as well as calls for more windfall taxes on oil companies.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.